Supersaver. Travelstart. And their siblings. All whose father is Marco Polo Travel. My less than pleasant experiences below show you how they can intrude on your hard earned downtime:
- While on vacation in Myanmar I get an e-mail telling me that my flight from where I’m currently at has had a change of flight time/flight number, and that I need to check and confirm changes via their portal. 20 minutes later I get the same e-mail once more.
- I check said portal, where I find no info to check and confirm. After rummaging around, I finally find a field in a Message to Customer Service form where I am to accept or decline the change. But which change are they referring to?
- Since I can’t find any info regarding flight changes on their portal, I go through all the info in the e-mail they sent, which shows no changes at all…
- I e-mail them to let them know that I can’t see any changes to my flight neither on their portal nor in the e-mail, and that I accept the flights as they are stated in the e-mail have I recently received.
- I then get a reply from them saying that since I am concerned they have contacted the airline and can confirm that there are no changes. I am concerned?? Where the f*** did they get that from?? Whatever!
- Two days later the initial e-mail pops up in my inbox again. Are you kidding me?? For the third time??
- I send them another e-mail asking if this is the same e-mail which has been resent by mistake or if there are (new) changes.
- Same reply as last time. Since I am concerned etc. Is this for real??
Second run-in. You thought this was it 🙂 This one is worse…
- Two days pass. On the third day there is a new e-mail from my “friends” at Gotogate. The airline has cancelled the flight of the other ticket I bought from them, my return flight from my next destination. As there are no alternatives, they have to cancel my booking.
- Since I had my previous experience fresh in mind, I decided to do my own little “investigation”. I had my hotel call the airline, which confirmed the flight was not cancelled, just operated by a partner airline, and that I didn’t have to do anything in that regard. Since hotel staff wasn’t the best at English, I also had my local friend call the airline. Same response. They had had a glitch in their system, but everything was as it should be.
- I e-mailed Gotogate twice without getting an answer. I tried calling, but since I was calling from abroad I didn’t get through. Tried to call other phone numbers I found online, but to no avail. In the end I had to call a friend back home, and have him call Gotogate, and he was then told I had to call myself, but was given a UK number for me to call.
- It was ringing. Then the phone got picked up, but no one spoke. I could hear the background noise. After saying Hello! several times, a man says: I am still working on another clients case, so you will have to wait… Why the h*** do you pick up then?? He then stops talking to me, and keeps on working with me on the line. After a while he speaks again, saying: OK, now I can help you.
- I explain the situation to him, what the airline has said, and ask them not to cancel my ticket. He insists my flight has been cancelled, and that the ticket is cancelled as well. During our discussion he mentions that the flight has been cancelled, that the flight times have changed, that stops have been added to the route. When I ask him if the flight isn’t cancelled after all, he says the flight is cancelled. You go figure!
- After a long while I am so furious that I just give up. He then ask me to confirm that they can cancel the ticket – hadn’t you already done that…? Then he asks me if I want my money refunded. At this point I go off: So, you have cancelled my ticket, and now you’re wondering if I want my money back??? He: Yes! Me: What do you think?? Of course I want my money back!! He: OK! And lucky me, I will get my refund in 2-8 weeks.
- When he comes back from downstairs, where he apparently had to go to get the refund process started, I ask for his name and an e-mail confirming that 1) they have not cancelled the next day plane tickets, 2) they have cancelled the plane ticket in question, and 3) that I will get my money refunded.
- He is very hesitant on providing his name. After a while he says he can spell it. S-A-K-E-T. Me: So Saket (pronounced Suck it) in other words…? Didn’t realize I had called him Suck it! after hanging up 😀
- After a while I get the e-mail I requested, with some confirmations missing. But listen to this: Flight has been cancelled due to…time change!! Hmmm… Liar, liar, pants on fire…
- In the end I booked a ticket on the same flight from the airline’s website. It was cheaper than the ticket I had gotten from Gotogate, but with the added cost of a 30 minutes phone call from a foreign cell phone number in Myanmar to a UK number, it was a wash.
If you still want to use these guys for your travel needs after reading this, I can only wish you good luck! I have used them a couple of times previously, with no problems, but after this, NO MORE!